New exhibition on Australian Indigenous traditional healing practice

The Medical History Museum at the University of Melbourne recently opened its new exhibition The art of healing: Australian Indigenous traditional healing practice. The exhibition presents examples of traditional Indigenous healing practice from the many distinct and varied Indigenous communities throughout Australia. These are shown through contemporary art practice and examples of plants.

Highlights include the work of Gija elder and artist Shirley Purdie, who has spent the last two years illustrating the bush medicine of her region near Warmun in the Kimberly, as well as the work of Treahna Hamm who reveals in Yorta Yorta Bush Medicine First Aid Kit the use of medicinal plants in Victoria. The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue with the perspectives of Indigenous communities represented.

The key to this exhibition is revealing that traditional Indigenous healing is a current practice informed by the past, and an intrinsic part of the life of Indigenous people in Australia.

Image: Judith Pugkarta Inkamala, Bush Medicine, 2017. Medical History Museum, University of Melbourne